Image: Airman 1st Class Kathleen D. Bryant

The girl on the yellow bus.

Destination is Brookside Day School.

The girl likes getting dressed on her own.

She loves looking out the window while moving.

Yellow buses pulling up and driving off.

Once she saw a boy looking at her.

She shyly turns away.

She wants to show him her boots.

The new boots stop below her bony knees.

Dull brown with cozy interior, soothing fingers.

Every morning her prayers are thin legs entering the god.

It’s the armor against slushy snow made brown.

She stomps around to dare the cold.

Prancing with glee on the stark white carpeting.

Boot prints of the Black girl lead back to the house.

White neighbors in white houses watch her count the jumps.

They see her get off the bus, as the ribbons in her hair slap the wind.

She never turns around.

Her boots look as good as new.

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